The Heritage Studio

Timeless interview with artist Fiona Maclean

By Bebe Leone

Fiona Maclean is an Artist and Painter originally from NZ and living in Australia. Fiona’s work has been described as “hauntingly beautiful and that her portraits have traces of glamour and intrigue beneath their honesty. Her subjects are intensely engaging extracting and translating fragments of secrets of the soul.” Fascinated by the fleetingness of youth, beauty and sexuality and the elusiveness of these particular elements, Fiona tries to capture those within her portraits and figurative work. Always curious to discover whom the subject is behind the façade, trying to get to the essence of the person, breathing and bringing to life the portrait or figure.  Evoking an element of ‘drama’ to the subject where the viewer can ‘draw their own conclusions to what this person’s ‘story’ may be. Fiona’s paintings hang in private collections and appear in International publications.

Fiona’s Timeless interview

H: Do you belong more to the past, the present or the future?

F: The now.

H: What of your country’s heritage represents you the most?

F: The pioneering and somewhat antipodean spirit. And being so far away geographically from the rest of the world and growing up and living in relatively ‘young’ countries. Because of this I think NZ and Australia create real signature style in fashion, music and art.

H: Something of your family’s heritage which you would like to bring forward?

F: Both my parents had a talent for drawing but neither of them pursued art. My mother used to draw mainly portraits and figurative studies of any of us children who would sit still for long enough. She was also clever with dressmaking and helped me construct dresses from some of my fashion illustrations.

 H: A heritage image?

F: The beautiful portrait paintings by Charles Frederick Goldie 

H: A place?

F: A farm in New Zealand where we would go visit during our school holidays each year, roaming around finding ‘artifacts’

H: A word?

F: Kia Ora! (Maori NZ greeting for hello)

H: A sound?

F: Jeff Buckleys voice 

H: An icon?

F: Madonna

H: An object belonging to your own heritage?

F: An old Brownie camera that was handed down from my Great Grandfather

H: A time in history you would like to live again? 

Early 90’s for the music, the art and fashion!

H: Something heritage you’d like to wear?

F: Anything from Wheels and Dollaby

H: Timeless inspiration for your new collection?

F: Sexuality

H: Something from your present meant to become heritage?

F: The new series I am working on from my travels through the beautiful city of Barcelona, particularly El Born area. “La chica de El Born”

Photos: Courtesy of Fiona Maclean




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